We didn't go hiking near as much last year as we did in 2015 because we found out Bug had allergies and asthma and it took us a long time to get it under control. Being an hour away from the nearest hospital and no cell reception was too scary for me so we just stopped hiking.
This year we have Bug on some new medicines that seem to be making her symptoms better and she feels a lot more like herself finally. So I promised we would try it out and see how she feels.
January was abnormally warm for a couple of weeks and there was one day that was a perfect 70 degrees and sunny so we headed out to try a brand new hiking location in the Shawnee National Forest.
Dixon Springs is a beautiful little park with a swimming pool and some amazing scenery. There are giant boulders you can climb on and the entire area is surrounded by bubbling creeks.
The best part of Dixon Springs are the waterfalls that are almost hidden in the back of the park. When we first started our hiking adventures two years ago Goose wanted most to see a big waterfall and oddly enough this was our first one.
There's a bridge spanning across the falls and it took us a while to find where it started but it just meant traipsing through more of the pretty area.
On the top of the bounders there is a tiny road with three old churches side by side on it. They were all identical in varying stages of disrepair. This was the oldest one and our favorite.
After taking a break at the playground we went searching for another area to explore and found a hiking path called Ghost Dance Canyon. This path was incredibly tiny and hard to maneuver and I'm not sure we even completed the entire trail but it got to where we were climbing over slippery moss-covered boulders and we thought it would be best to turn back.
We did get to see a lot more of the rushing creek on it though.
You also pass underneath the highway and the bridge looks so giant as you are underneath it.
Across the street from the park is a store called The Chocolate Factory and they are popular for making shaped chocolates. There are chocolates that look like deviled eggs, bacon, flowers, and Goose's favorite, mice:
Our first hike of 2017 was so much fun and we are looking forward to a lot more adventures this year!